Timeless Design...... well maybe not.

The timless style of a modest Georgian home, and below, well........not so timeless.

An afternoon walk with the dog through a so-called "luxury" housing development, left me perplexed. Does luxury now mean at least 10 roof lines on a house? 



Sadly the roof line phenomenon is everywhere. Take a look at new home construction and you will notice, bump outs and gables over every window. Is this an attempt to make the big box suburan house more interesting? If so, it fails. 

How will these houses look to the consumers eye 20 years from now? Trend houses, like anything trend, does not age well. Remember the 1970's houses with the split entry, up 4 steps and down 4 steps, they are every renovators nightmare. 

Perhaps it is my Danish heritage that I crave simplicity in architecture. Give me a Georgain mansion or a humble cottage to admire anyday. On a trip back to the Maritimes I snapped a lot of photos of homes. Please notice the simple roof lines.


One gable in the roof, perfectly balanced and proportionate to the front door, this small home has a very grand curb appeal.


A simple Colonial roof line, it is all about the front door. Stunning craftsmanship of the original woodwork has prevailed on this house for over 150 years.


Think back to when you were little and you drew a picture of a house, I bet it looked alot like this one. A simple gabel roof gets the upscale treatment of beautiful dentil work. The front door is modest, but given a sense of importance with over sized gorbels supporting the overhang.

These last three photos show homes that are grand in appearance, yet in fact, much smaller in square footage then their so-called "luxury" 21st century counterparts. These homes use symmetry, balance, and craftsmanship in detail (the front door) to transcend time.

Do you notice that in the case of the newer homes you have no sense of where the front door would be? In each of the historical homes the front door is center stage, beautifully crafted, a sense of arrival and welcoming. Here on the west coast few of us live in heritage homes, but that does not mean we can not learn from them.

While I have used historic homes to make my point, take a look at Frank Lloyd Wright's modern classic " Falling Water " or Phillip Johnson's Glass House. Both homes are mid century modern icons. Why? They follow the principles of symmetry, balance, and craftsmanship.

Timeless design, we see it rarely today. My first thought when I consider a piece of furniture for the store, it is timeless. No matter how old or how rare it is, it must be  able to adapt to the 21st century. 

Great design is one thing and one thing only .............timeless.


Love Where You Live